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I plan to be known as a cancer SURVIVOR

braswelm's picture
braswelm
Posts: 41
Joined: Oct 2011

As I have read the many posts here over the last week or so, it has lifted my spirits to hear so many brave stories.
I'm a 51 yr old male, been healthy most of my life, so the news of a 7.5-8.0 cm tumor on my kidney was quite a shock.
Even worse, the surgeon thought I already knew....until I turned pale! But, I am determined to handle this with a positive attitude.
The CT report says no sign of it in my lymph nodes, or any other organs. Doc says nephrectomy (see, there is a positive, I learned a new word LOL!) will get all of it, with 90% chance it will not return. Scheduled for surgery the day before Thanksgiving. I have the same fears, questions, and doubts as I see posted on here, but believe in the power of prayer, and have peace from God about my situation.
I hope sharing my experiences can be helpful to someone else going through this, and I plan to be known from here on out as a cancer SURVIVOR.
Thank all of you for you willingness to share. You are all in my prayers.
Mike

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 1550
Joined: Jan 2010

Mike,

You are half way there with a positive attitude. So what if you skip a Thanksgiving dinner. At most you will want some kind of broth on the day after surgery. Hopefully you will be able to watch the football games on day 2.

Best wishes,

Icemantoo

LFocus
Posts: 12
Joined: Aug 2011

You have the best medicine to take with you during the time before surgery. I had my right kidney removed on 11/27...I was home is 2 days. The surgery went great and like you I am a cancer survivor. I use the same medicine your did The power of prayer, positive attitude, and the peace of God. With that said...believe and continue to keep your faith in God cause He is the only hope we have. He is the Great Physician..He knows all things and He working it our for you good. Update of my surgery I doing awesome, not over doing anything; just doing what the doctors asked of me..and following instruction from the Lord. I can say I made it!!!! I'll live a long life knowing that people like the ones on the site are truly sent by God that we may get the help me need from loving one another to LIVE..So live on my brother you shall have a long life.. Stay positive and keep a good attitude you will have victory of THE BIG C is not a option for Us..so say good-bye to cancer and hello the the King of Kings and Lord of Lords...You are healed.....by His stripes...Blessings LFoucs

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

Hey mike. I’m right there with you (7cm). Still finding out the fine details before surgery but I’m hoping to move forward with it before Thanksgiving as well. I plan on not only being a survivor but also being a combat veteran. Stay mentally positive. Get your body moving every day so you’re as physically prepared as you are mentally. Go after this thing with extreme prejudice and destroy it. Before we know it summer will be here and this will be nothing but a distant memory. I’m in your corner and will follow your journey on this board as well as keep you and everyone updated on my progress. Hang tough!

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

msacher63,

Coming into this with an attack mentality is exactly the right way in my opinion and I love the extreme prejudice line. I had Thanksgiving dinner in the hospital two years ago following the removal of my left kidney and the leach that was attached to it, not home cookin' but a meal I'll always remember. A strong positive attitude will get you through this faster and in better shape mentally and physically, don't let go of it. Never give up, never give in, and never surrender!!

Gary

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1910
Joined: Oct 2011

You have got the first step mastered. Good for you!!! Kick ass!

braswelm's picture
braswelm
Posts: 41
Joined: Oct 2011

Well, I've been waiting almost a month for surgery. Still feeling very positive, even though we lost my Father-in-law last week to injuries suffered in a fall.
My biggest concern so far is my wife. My Dad passed away in August, and she was very close to him, then last month was my diagnosis, then the death of her Father last week was quite a blow. She is tough, and seems to be hanging in there....
I've started having some back pain, especially when sitting for long periods. But still, it has been surprisingly mild. Of course, every pain in any part of my body now has me wondering....

Mike

msacher63
Posts: 21
Joined: Oct 2011

It's the final countdown. I'm so sorry to hear of your families other trageties. It must be difficult for all. The best thing you can do right now is stay focused on your speedy recovery so they have one less thing to worry about. Stay positive and do everything the doctors and nurses say to the letter. All the little things pay off big in the end. Good luck. Looking forward to your first "after surgery" post.

Limelife50's picture
Limelife50
Posts: 411
Joined: Nov 2011

When it came to me when I was waiting for the day of my surgery I kept thinking about a Tom petty song where he sings(the waiting is the hardest part) I was so happy when the day arrived for my surgery so I could get that monster out of me.On 10/04/2011 the old mike was gone and a new mike was born.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Mike,

Will be thinking and praying for you and your upcoming nephrectomy. I am almost a month past my surgery, and plan on going back to my part time job next week. I was hoping for only a couple of days in the hospital after surgery, but it turned into 4 days. Couldn't keep anything on stomach until they got me off morphine. Took pain meds for the 1st week at home. Afterwards only had soreness with the main incision. I feel I could have gone back to work this week at the veterinary clinic, but was probably best to wait. Played with my grand-boys this week to get my strength back. Just don't rush things, eat small meals and follow doctors advice. I am positive you'll do well and be on the recovery side of this soon.

Doug

Katielynn
Posts: 61
Joined: Apr 2011

You have such a positive attitude..and I think your strong faith has much to do with it. I feel all we have is our faith in our loving God, and prayer. I don't know what I would have done without my faith...I pray for the best for you. Hang in there..There are good days...It's the little bumps in the road like labwork and scans that unnerve me, but the good days outnumber the bad. Keep positive....You are also in my prayers ~j~

braswelm's picture
braswelm
Posts: 41
Joined: Oct 2011

Three days out and still positive, even with the loss of my Father in law last week. It almost seems that my surgery should not be intruding in our lives right now. But, I believe God's timing put things where they are supposed to be.
Reading the posts on here has certainly keep me from feeling that no one understands what I am going through. It was funny to hear others talk about a list of things to do around the house before their surgery. That is exactly what I did. Finished everything except getting the Christmas tree up, but our kids will be here next week so I told them it's their job. I'm getting one last round of golf in this afternoon.
I've noticed a gradual increase in pain in my back, mostly after sitting for long periods. Finally got some pain medication last week, but I tend to use it sparingly. Was not aware of the nausea symptom until I read it here....thought I was just having sinus draining. Also had been drinking 5 hour energy drinks and realize now it was masking the fatigue. Have not had one in the last six weeks and boy, I can tell the difference.
Occasionally, the fears creep in....what if it has spread? What if something goes wrong? This is normal, and usually a quick little prayer relieves me.
Went in for pre-admission testing last week, and my main concern was that they give me something to relax me before going into the operating room. I hate seeing the equipment and lights in there! Nurse assured me they would, and even have a second dose ready if needed!
I pray for all of you to have the comfort and peace of God as we continue this journey together.

BG
Posts: 85
Joined: Jun 2011

I am all for calming before the surgery. I asked for something first thing I arrived at the hospital, didnt think to ask before.

They gave me two valiums, and a tiny sip of water since you are suppose to fast (even no liquids) before surger, 12 hours before?? You may ask about that. The medicine really helped to calm me, I told my doctor an hour after the medicine set in, that I had faith in him. He asked if I had faith in the big guy, and I said of course.

Th next thing I knoew, I was waking up with my wife at the recovery bedside. I was in my room, in no pain, and on the road to recovery. You will be there soon. A few things that I think would be very helpful

1) make sure they give you anti nauseau medicine, the morphine may make you nauseuas
2) be sure to get a stoll softener to take at home as the pain meds can constipate you
3) make sure they give you a good dose of pain meds before they remove the catheter, they did the 1,2,3 heave how on me, not pleasant
4) let your family and friends help tske care of you, and rest when your body tells you to
5) As much as it may hurt, after surgery they will push for you to walk and urinate, be persistent, it gets easier each time
6) know that God is by your side through this!

I wish you the best, and will be saying s special prayer for you. I am 4 months post surgery, and still feel there is an angel on my shoulder.

BG

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 1910
Joined: Oct 2011

You'll do well with surgery. Doc's, nurses and staff are pros. For me it was when I woke up in the recovery. First of all, I am a vivid dreamer. So is my daughter and sister. We can daily share our bizarro dreams. Well, I guess anesthesia sent me into la-la land. When I came to, I was insisting that I was James Bond and that I was supposed to be at the local high school, not in the hospital. I had them worried there for awhile.HA HA! I felt bad and apologized for freaking them out...Any way, last night I went to summer camp with Drew Carry. Everyone was wearing those eyeglasses with the bushey eyebrows and big nose attached...Oh well. Good luck. A little humor should help calm you down.

robert_douglas_smith's picture
robert_douglas_smith
Posts: 84
Joined: Oct 2011

Mike,

Sinuses didn't bother me at all while in the hospital. My original symptoms that found my renal cancer was that everything smelled and tasted bad. one xray led to another until I had the nephrectomy. During the CT scan last week of my brain they found no tumor (YEA!) but found that even after the sinus surgery I still have a sinus infection. ENT gave me more antibiotics. Most everything still taste and smells bad. Funny, the original problem is still a problem. Between loosing weight from the surgery and not eating a lot from the sinus problems, I have lost 30 pounds. Really I hope I can keep that off (and a little more). Again am thinking of you and you surgery on Wednesday. That's the same day of week I had my surgery and then came home on Saturday. Do what your suppose to do, be where your suppose to be and the Lord will take care of the rest.

Doug

ContactBeckyxo's picture
ContactBeckyxo
Posts: 1
Joined: Dec 2011

This is my first time on this site and have been reading over all these posts and have to leave my first comment so I can hopefully have some feedback, inspire, and get to know and help each other through this battle with cancer. I was reading over what some of the survivors of 2,4,6,8,10yrs and still living with this God Awful disease and never heard really what they are doing as far as HEALTH?, FOOD?, ANTIOXIDENCE?, STATE OF MIND?, or anything that is helpful for ones who are reaching out and looking for inspiration... "How they do it" ??? or have they forgotten how important and inspiring that would be if they have been living with cancer and still feeling strong because they changed their life style and state of mind even better than they ever have in their lives before. For me, my fiance was just diagnosed with kidney cancer and it has already spread to his limpnotes and I have been researching like crazy and found this site that educates you on THE POWER OF FOODS AND ANTIOXIDENCE TO FIGHT CANCER. I have never been so driven to embrase this new lifestyle of eating "and" the state of mind that needs to go "hand and hand" ( like the laws of attraction "sort of speak" ) I need my future husband in my life for the long haul....And I really beleive we can do it!!! The power of mind,body and spirit!

garym's picture
garym
Posts: 1651
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Becky,

Very sorry to hear what you and your fiancee are going through, its always harder when young people like you are forced to seek sites like this, but welcome to the club. I am just over 2 years post-op for a 5.1cm tumor, left side, lap. rad. nephrectomy, and I have become a regular here. I will share my individual experience and opinion, but please keep in mind that this is only from my perspective and I think it differs for everyone.

For me, once the shock of discovery and the fear that comes with it, the surgery, the recovery, and a serious bout of survivor's guilt had a chance to pass, which took close to a year all together, cancer became a secondary concern. You see, my battle ended with the surgery, no chemo, radiation, or drugs required. What caused it could not be determined, most of the usual risk factors such as smoking did not apply to me. I cannot control whether it will return so I decided to work on the things I can control. Worrying about cancer 24-7 would be worse than having it for me.

My primary focus has become the health of my remaining kidney. I exercise regularly, I drink at least 1/2 gallon of water daily, I watch my intake of sodium, protein, and phosphorus, and I monitor my blood pressure weekly. Of course I also have regular follow up exams and tests in an effort to remain vigilant. Past that my life is pretty "normal".

I hope this helps,

Gary

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